Preparing Your Home for the Holidays

With the holidays rapidly approaching, you may be thinking about how to prepare your home for the guests who will be arriving shortly. Whether they’re just coming for dinner, or if they will be staying overnight, here are some things you can do to make their stay more enjoyable and comfortable, without busting your holiday budget.

Take a Good Look Around

When you live in your home every day, it can be easy to overlook the small flaws in it. Take a look around your home with fresh eyes to see what little fixes you can do to help spruce up your home before your guests arrive. Some examples might include touching up the paint in areas where it has chipped, wiping down the areas around door handles or cabinet knobs that tend to get smudged, giving tile grout a good scrubbing, and dusting the blinds and baseboards. Most people who visit during the holidays won’t care if your home isn’t immaculately decorated, but they will appreciate it if your home appears to be clean and well-maintained.

You can also read about How to Destress This Holiday Season

Make Space in the Refrigerator

When you have a lot of people over for a meal, you are likely to need extra space in your refrigerator. Before the holidays arrive, go through your refrigerator and discard anything that is expired or that you know you will never use again—like that half-empty jar of an ingredient you bought for a specific dish that you didn’t particularly enjoy. Once you clear everything out, take the time to wipe down all of the shelves and drawers. Your refrigerator look new again and you’ll have space for all of the food and drinks you need for a holiday party!

Create “Zones” in Your Living Spaces

Not everyone who comes over will be interested in the same types of activities. Some will prefer to sit and talk, while others may want to play games, watch sporting events, or help in the kitchen. If you have the room, create several different zones that will allow your guest to easily and comfortablytake part in the types of activities that interest them most.

You can set up a small card table with some popular games, a few decks of cards, and some dice for those who like to engage in a little friendly competition. Make sure you include a small pad of paper and a pen for keeping score! For those who like to watch sports, place some comfortable seating around the television and provide surfaces on which to place snacks and drinks. For your guests who like to be a part of preparing the food and drinks, have some specific jobs in mind that they can help with and create space in your kitchen to allow them to help. If kitchen space is limited, you could set up a drink station just outside of it for mixing up a few signature cocktails or specialty coffee drinks. If the weather is nice, you could also have outdoor areas in which people could congregate.

Provide Overnight Guests with the Comforts of a Hotel

If you have guests who will spend the night, make their space as comfortable as possible by thinking like a hotel owner. Outfit your guest room with a surface on which to place their bag (so they don’t have to put it on the floor), as well as a few toiletries. Don’t make your guests share the same bar of soap with your kids or have to use your specific brand of haircare products. Purchase a few inexpensive travel-sized items and make sure you let your guests know that they are there for their use. Don’t forget things that your guests might forget to pack, such as a toothbrush or a hairbrush. Many of these items can be purchased at dollar stores. Even if they don’t end up using them, they will appreciate the gesture. In addition, provide overnight guests with your Wi-Fi password to allow them to unwind and catch up on their email at the end of the night.

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